It’s white, it’s crinkly, it’s waterproof and it feels like it weighs about as much as a tissue paper. But what exactly is Cuben Fiber, and why use it?
When I first delved into the world of ultralight backpacking, I combed the Internet trying to find a technologically advanced material that would change my backcountry experience. The fabrics used at the time had major limitations. For example, Silnylon, the primary lightweight fabric used, absorbed moisture and swelled and sagged, requiring constant re-tensioning. The slippery material also forced people to put liquid glues on the floors of their tents to keep their pads in place. Worst of all, silnylon is made when both sides of a thin, woven nylon fabric are saturated with liquid silicone, and there were no standards for these silicone coatings. So basically every batch was different. So when I discovered a small cottage industry outdoor company using Cuben Fiber I did some more research.
Read more at Hyperlite Mountain Gears blog.
Cuben Fiber is the best fabric for ultralight shelters and backpacks, no doubt.